The first amendment gives every American the right to free speech and that right should not be extinguished when one walks onto a college campus. Colleges should be where free speech is held to its highest degree. When one leaves high school, he or she should be ready to tackle on the all the challenges life has to offer. As children, most of us are taught that we do not have constitutional rights- we cannot vote, we cannot put what we want into our own bodies, etc. When one reaches adulthood, he or she should be able to freely exercise his or her constitutional rights the way he or she sees fit.
This brings to where I was on Tuesday. I was tabling for “Tunnel of Awareness”. This was as event put on by ASU as a way for various social justice groups to spread their message. I was feeling rather anxious before it began. I was about to preach the values of free speech to social justice advocates. I thought that there might be a quarrel or something would happen that would get me in trouble. Much to my surprise, that did not happen at all. I would normally start off a conversation by saying “What are your thoughts on speech codes, safe spaces, or free speech zones”, and the nastiest response I got was “I think they can be necessary to fend off ‘hate speech”. That was it. No fights. No screams. No major conflict. My response to that was typically “Well, I appreciate your views, but I believe that ‘hate speech’ is still ‘free speech”, to which they normally nodded “yea”. We had a reasonable discussion and I told them about the Bill of Rights. I emphasized how it is to protect our freedoms and secure our liberties.
This event was a great way for me to talk about free speech on campus and get plenty of new sign-ups for Young Americans for Liberty at ASU.